Post # 1
In your opinion, are engagement pictures worth the money? Does anyone regret not doing it? Did anybody use someone other than their wedding photographer for them?
My parents are giving me a flat amount to spend on the wedding. Anything left after that is ours to spend on our honeymoon. We really want to go to Australia, so every penny left over will count, so I’m trying to keep this wedding very budget friendly.
Our wedding photographer is one thing that we are splurging on. But engagement pictures from them, in addition to their package (which is pretty pricy, IMO) is $350. I’d love to do a shoot with them to get some really great pictures and learn their style of shooting… but $350 could get us farther somewhere else. And I kind of feel like we need to get engagement pictures because it’s expected in the area I live in, not because I personally think we need them. Won’t we get enough great pictures of us at our wedding?
Another option would be to hire a friend we have that takes awesome pictures, and pay her like $100 instead. But if we get engagement pictures, wouldn’t it be better to use the people who are shooting our wedding?
Please share your stories.. if you got engagement pictures, who did you use? Was it worth it? If you didn’t, do you regret it?
Thanks for your insight, bees.
Post # 3
@FutureMrsGG: We had my MIL do our engagement pictures because, well, it was free. Yes, we used them for a lot of things leading up to the wedding, but now they are almost non-existent. I can’t say that for every bride because every bride is different and some like having their pics.
MIL did a great job. It was nice to have her rather than a pro photog because one, we didn’t spend anything. Two, we got to keep all of them and got them immediately (instant gratification), and we didn’t feel posed or uncomfortable.
For our wedding, we had someone else do them, and because she is an ameture photog, we paid her 1000 which was significantly less than what a pro photog would be paid, but we made sure to stalk her work becuase we entered a contract with her or anything. Style didn’t really matter to me when it came to wedding photos. I wanted someone who was willing to listen to what we wanted and how we wanted to be posed. Of course, she suggested some, but I didn’t feel stressed or fake in my photos.
Post # 4
Unless the pictures are included in the wedding package i see no need to pay anything additional for them. I didn’t really use them for anything. The wedding pictures are the important ones.
Post # 5
@FutureMrsGG: My FMIL is doing our engagement photos, maybe you could ask a friend to do them or some photographers include it in their packages .. I do not think it is a big deal if you don’t have engagement pictures.
Post # 6
If you’re splurging on your wedding photographer, it might be wise to test the photographer out beforehand. If you’re spending thousands, then what’s another $350? It seems like a small price to pay to test the waters, since it sounds like the wedding photos are super important to you.
That would be my only reason for getting the engagement photos. I find most of them to be super cheesy and embarrassing! Especially if you/your FI aren’t used to be photographed, it might make for better wedding photos if you’re more comfortable around the photographer.
Post # 7
We couldn’t use our wedding photographer, because we are having a destination wedding (sort of). We found an amazing local photog (we would have totally hired him for the wedding if we were doing a local wedding). We got incredible pictures together and they really make us happy everyday. It has made my camera shy FI understand how awesome photography can be!
That being said, I love love love love photos. That’s probably why I love splurging on them.
Post # 8
I wasn’t going to get pics done but I went I saw two different engagement session photos that my sorority sisters had taken with their fiances and they took my breath away! FI and I were able to find a great photog for 2 hours, 3 locations, 3 wardrobe changes for $140. You really have to shop around, but since your friend can do it, I say go ahead and get the E photos!
Post # 9
@FutureMrsGG: I wouldn’t have done engagement pictures if I didn’t get a free session. One of my moms coworkers is also a photographer and offered to trade camera time in exchange for crocheted baby photo props. Technically, I’m getting paid to have them taken. Otherwise,we probably wouldn’t have them.
Post # 10
@FutureMrsGG: I would go ahead and pay the extra $350 for 2 reasons.
One, you will get to know your photographer more and get used to working with him/her. I’m not sure about you, but the last time I took professional photos was for my senior pic in high school at a portrait studio. Totally different and it was helpful to get comfortable with our photographer and get used to taking pictures without worrying about time like you will on your wedding day. There were also a few things that my husband and I noticed we did in our engagement pics that we were like “okay, make sure we don’t do x, y, and z at the wedding.”
Two, it is nice to have good quality photos of you and your FI that have a more casual feel and you usually have much more freedom including outfit changes, incorporating your home, pets, kids, etc. We have several engagement pictures up in our house and we also used these pics for our save the dates.
Post # 11
Hmmm I see where you are coming from on this one. I’m going back and forth myself here. I don’t think engagement pictures are necessary, but would be nice. I’d like to have a large picture of us at the ceremony, and have professional pictures of FI and I not in our wedding attire. I think having those pictures will give us options of hanging a few in our home as well as our parents.
If that money could be better used elsewhere, go with your gut and have a friend take some pictures for you and don’t worry about paying a photographer for pro pictures.
You can take such great photos now with the technology that we have and it’s so easy to make simple edits, a need for a photographer for this type of shoot doesn’t seem %100 necessary.
Post # 12
I just had my engagement session and loved every moment of it! I am all for budget friendly but I am excited to get a preview of how my wedding pics will come out. I also got to know the photographers so I won’t be so nervous on the day of. I also look at it as practice (ie don’t make that face, etc).
I think it is a great opportunity to have engagement pictures especially if you are going to incorporate them somewhere in your wedding (our pics are becoming a guest book). Do you NEED to have it through your photographer? No. Should you? Possibly, it all depends on what you are trying to get out of the session.
Post # 13
I think engagement pictures are kind of a waste. I’ve never seen e-pictures that looked natural or worth the money.
I would be content with wedding pics and the extra money for the honeymoon
Post # 14
We paid $450 for our engagement pictures and did it for the following reasons.
1) I am super awkward in front of cameras. I have a super angry resting face apparently, as I found out from being a bridesmaid over the summer. I wanted time to bond with our photographer and figure out what looks good on camera. I also what the photographer to get a feel for what we’re like, and our personalities.
2) This is a special time in my life that I want to document. We’re both young, in love, and I want those pictures. We also don’t have any friends who are photographers to use instead, but I had a friend do that for her wedding to save money and it worked out great for her.
Post # 15
I did it to test my wedding photographer – it was only $350 and he stuck around all night (no time limit). I really liked them because we got to take photos at the annual fair where we go every year.
It was good practice for us – we don’t know how to “pose” so we look good, and we got the chance to meet the photographer and get comfortable around him. I created a photobook with the engagement photos to use as a guest book for people to sign.
I think it was worth it, but to each their own!
Post # 16
We paid $100 for ours and it was worth it to us. We had almost no pictures together before our engagement pictures so that was our main motive.